Am I being rude? [requesting reservations by email]

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Hi everyone.
I'm a owner of two hotels and I've to admit that an email like that one [the first one of this topic] would make me behave and reply in the same way of that owner.
its tone sounds like if I must do all he asks.
it is business, it is true, but I've also the right to choose right customers.
it is me who is selling after all.
…and you won't sell much if you offend your customers by not allowing for small misunderstandings of language.
  • roxcyn

    Senior Member
    American English [AmE]
    Hi (first name),

    On the 16 January, we will arrive at (town).

    I will take delivery of a rental car, and (...) we will first all drive to (your hotel) to have lunch and settle in (our room).

    Please be ready for lunch for all of us (5 persons) at 12:30-1:00pm. I will pay for this separately.

    (...)Awaiting your confirmation.

    With thanks,

    Kind regards,
    When you are only considering your needs and demanding that someone do soemthing for you, they will consider that you are being very demanding (overbearing) and as you see you will get a reply such as you received or you will not receive a reply at all. Let's try to improve what you wrote.

    04 November 2006

    Dear (such and such) OR To Whom It May Concern:

    Your hotel has provided such wonderful service when I have stayed there before. I have a request and I hope your hotel could fullfill it. On (date), I would like to have lunch with four other people at your hotel from ____ to ____ (time). If this comes at an inconvience to other parties or if your lunches are all booked up at your hotel, I will understand.

    Please contact me as soon as possible to let me know if there will be room. If there is not, could you recommend other places for lunch? Thank you very much in advance. I will await your reply.

    Sincerely yours,


    Senior Member
    American English [AmE]
    I must comment on what other people have said refering to the person that should not be rude.

    Let me tell you, email can be "read" in so many ways. Just because the worker should be professional, if she/he is being treated rudely (like sh**), then there may be a witty or rude reply back. Remember, no one likes to be demanded to do something, especially a hotel as there may be other obligations that they have scheduled for other groups :p


    Senior Member
    American English [AmE]
    One last comment, I know it is email, but you can be more formal to them, and I think it will give you more respect and they will be more likely to grant your request.

    . 1

    Australian Australia
    I am still at a loss to understand the reply.
    I am led to believe that one of the main profit earning areas of a motel is the restaurant and I would have thought that the owner would have been delighted that you had confirmed five meals for lunch which should be a slow time at a motel restaurant.
    I have a suspicion that the writer is a little confused as to the intimacy of the relationship between paying guest and employed motel.

    This is not the same as the relationship between Aunt Mabel and her relations.

    There are no favours being asked. And the writer is being pedantic with the use of demand but it is quite right. It is a demand backed up with the offer of payment in Legal Tender.
    It sounds like the hotel is run by a Basil Fawlty clone who thinks that paying guests are a pain and should be left to their own devices but that the guests should pay handsomly for the experience.

    I will concede that there is a possibility that the initial e-mail sounded slightly demanding but it also was written quite clearly and lucidly so that no mistake in intention could be made and it is by no means impolite or demeaning in tone. If anything the tone is acceptance that the quite reasonable requests will be able to be supplied by the motel.

    Continual insincere polite words must sprinkle such requests often at the expense of clarity.

    This motel has decided to exert psychological pressure on a guest based on the interpretation of a tone in a politely worded request for a paying business transaction before the business transaction has taken place. This is weird and I would not feel comfortable to share the hospitality of that person. That person is obviously continually surrounded by egg shells that everybody else has to make sure that they don't break because the grump will snap back at the slightest even imagined provocation as has happened in this case.

    This is the sort of place that could result in starched sheets or a blocked toilet or a noisy neighbour or any number of petty little irritants that this mug may deem fit to do to you for whatever slight they have imagined that you did to them.

    Motels sell the concept of comfortable places to sleep and eat and be pampered slightly due to the stresses of travelling or the winding down of holidaying or the hassle of business dealings and the assumption is that a certain number of specific requests will be readily agreed to in the name of profit and pleasure.
    It is the pleasure of the guest to bring an additional three patrons to a motel and it is the money that flows from that transaction that allows the motel to exist. Who should thank whom?



    Senior Member
    Dot&Commas, I wish all hotel owners thought like you.
    You would be a great one...:)

    The thing is.. First things first. And in hotel business, (lke in any other business) the first thing is good business which means, earning money. You will earn money if your guests leave your hotel satisfied with the service, not if they received the sermon on good behavior.
    I was thinking about another thing. How many stars does this hotel have? I am inclined to think that the more stars, the better service (thus, more expensive), therfore, the less possibility that something like this happens. I can imagine (very hard, but I can) in some hotel up to 3 stars, but in a hotel of 4 or 5, I think it is almost impossible.
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